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Stochastic Discount Factor Models and the Equity Premium Puzzle

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  • Otrok, Christopher
  • Ravikumar, B
  • Whiteman, Charles

Abstract

One view of the equity premium puzzle is that in the standard asset-pricing model with time-separable preferences, the volatility of the stochastic discount factor, for plausible values of risk aversion, is too low to be consistent with consumption and asset return data. We adopt this characterization of the puzzle, due to Hansen and Jagannathan (1991), and establish two results: (i) resolutions of the puzzle based on complete frictionless markets and non-separabilities in preferences are very sensitive to small changes in the consumption data, and (ii) models with frictions avoid this sensitivity problem. Using quarterly data from 1947-97, we calibrate a state non-separable model and a time non-separable model to satisfy the Hansen-Jagannathan volatility bound and show that the two resolutions are not robust. We support our argument via a bootstrap experiment where the models almost always violate the bound. These violations are primarily due to the fact that small changes in consumption growth moments imply changes in the mean of the stochastic discount factor, which render the volatility of the stochastic discount factor to be too low relative to the bound. Asset-pricing models with frictions, however, are much more successful in the bootstrap experiment relative to the case without frictions.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 22938.

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Date of creation: Nov 2001
Date of revision: Nov 2004
Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:22938

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Keywords: Stochastic Discount Factor; Hansen-Jagannathan Bound; Equity Premium;

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References

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  1. Boldrin, Michele & Christiano, Lawrence J. & Fisher, Jonas D.M., 1997. "Habit Persistence And Asset Returns In An Exchange Economy," Macroeconomic Dynamics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 1(02), pages 312-332, June.
  2. Cecchetti, Stephen G & Lam, Pok-sang & Mark, Nelson C, 1994. " Testing Volatility Restrictions on Intertemporal Marginal Rates of Substitution Implied by Euler Equations and Asset Returns," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 49(1), pages 123-52, March.
  3. Burnside, Craig, 1994. "Hansen-Jagannathan Bounds as Classical Tests of Asset-Pricing Models," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 12(1), pages 57-79, January.
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  6. John H. Cochrane & Lars Peter Hansen, 1992. "Asset Pricing Explorations for Macroeconomics," NBER Working Papers 4088, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. He, Hua & Modest, David M, 1995. "Market Frictions and Consumption-Based Asset Pricing," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 103(1), pages 94-117, February.
  8. Constantinides, George M, 1990. "Habit Formation: A Resolution of the Equity Premium Puzzle," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 98(3), pages 519-43, June.
  9. Lucas, Robert E, Jr, 1978. "Asset Prices in an Exchange Economy," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 46(6), pages 1429-45, November.
  10. Luttmer, Erzo G J, 1996. "Asset Pricing in Economies with Frictions," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 64(6), pages 1439-67, November.
  11. Hansen, Lars Peter & Jagannathan, Ravi, 1991. "Implications of Security Market Data for Models of Dynamic Economies," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(2), pages 225-62, April.
  12. Cochrane, John H. & Campbell, John, 1999. "By Force of Habit: A Consumption-Based Explanation of Aggregate Stock Market Behavior," Scholarly Articles 3119444, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  13. Lucas, Deborah J., 1994. "Asset pricing with undiversifiable income risk and short sales constraints: Deepening the equity premium puzzle," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 34(3), pages 325-341, December.
  14. Philippe Weil, 1989. "The Equity Premium Puzzle and the Riskfree Rate Puzzle," NBER Working Papers 2829, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Otrok, Christopher & Ravikumar, B. & Whiteman, Charles H., 1998. "Evaluating Asset-Pricing Models Using The Hansen-Jagannathan Bound: A Monte Carlo Investigation," Working Papers 99-01, University of Iowa, Department of Economics, revised Jan 1999.
  16. Mehra, Rajnish & Prescott, Edward C., 1985. "The equity premium: A puzzle," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 15(2), pages 145-161, March.
  17. John Heaton & Deborah Lucas, 1993. "Evaluating the Effects of Incomplete Markets on Risk Sharing and Asset Pricing," NBER Working Papers 4249, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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Cited by:
  1. Otrok, Christopher & Ravikumar, B. & Whiteman, Charles H., 2007. "A generalized volatility bound for dynamic economies," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(8), pages 2269-2290, November.

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